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TURKEY-LEAKS: Ankara’s state-owned media leaks location of secret US bases on Twitter

State-owned Turkish news outlet Anadolu Agency has published a Tweet of purported previously undisclosed locations of US bases in Syria. The Tweet remains on Anadolu’s official Twitter account, but the Duran has taken the decision not to republish it until a later date due to alleged security concerns.

Turkey remains furious with Washington for its alliance with Kurdish forces in Syria. After yesterday’s confirmation that Donald Trump has ended the CIA’s arming of jihadist groups in Syria and the simultaneous report from Raqqa that an affiliate of the Salafist jihadist group FSA has been withdrawn from the fight to capture Raqqa from ISIS, it became official that the Kurdish forces are America’s only battle-field ally in the country.

READ MORE: Trump ends CIA arms to Salafists in Syria

Turkey’s relationship with the United States continues to plummet while ironically Ankara has found ways to cooperate with Russia in the Astana Peace Talks, along with Iran which Turkey has also been drawn closer to, particularly in relation to the Qatar crisis.

According to Aaron Stein at the notoriously neo-con Atlantic Council,

“The U.S. takes force protection seriously, obviously.

The Turkish government knows this, and still decided to leak the locations of U.S. bases in Syria. Hard not to see this as a F-you”.

Seeing as the alleged locations of the bases published by Anadolu are all in Kurdish strongholds in northern Syria, it is easy to draw the same conclusion as Stein.

Anadolu insists that the information did not derive from a leak of inter-governmental intelligence, but was instead discovered through looking at Kurdish social media whose claims later corroborated by Anadolu’s investigative reporters.

Levent Tok of Anadolu further commented,

“The U.S. should have thought about this before it cooperated with a terrorist organisation”.

The terrorist organisation in question would appear to be the YPG, Syria’s Kurdish fighters which Turkey condemns as a terrorist security threat.

While the Pentagon has condemned Anadolu for the publication, many of these locations had previously been disclosed.

According to the Daily Beast,

“In fact, Anadolu had already published the information Monday on its Turkish language service and then issued it on its English language services Tuesday. In addition, some of the locations on the Anadolu list were already known in public. The Iranian Tasnim news agency, for example, last November published the names of two bases and two outposts, and the Jusour Center, a Syrian think tank, published the locations of two additional outposts in April”.

Seeing as the majority of the bases in question are close to the Turkish border, it is not difficult to believe Anadolu’s account of the event.

While the information on the base locations could have and in some cases has been published by non-governmental bodies or by governments which oppose America’s presence in the region, the fact that the state-owned news outlet of a fellow NATO state leaked the information is indicative of Turkey’s rapidly declining relationship with the United States.

The timing of the release and the confirmation that America is now exclusively backing Kurdish forces in the race for Raqqa is almost certainly not a coincidence.

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The statements, views and opinions expressed in this column are solely those of the author and do not necessarily represent those of The Duran.

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July 20, 2017

It seems odd to me that the US government would think it possible to conceal the location of its military bases. They aren’t exactly tiny or inconspicuous – and besides, couldn’t one easily plot their location by listing all the places where villages have been destroyed, houses burnt, and civilians massacred? In the middle of each such area, one could expect to find a US military base.

The terrorists don’t do nearly such a thorough or wholesale job.

Have a cigar!
Have a cigar!
July 20, 2017

So you don’t republish the locations of the secret U.S. military bases in Syria due to security concerns?
Is U.S. military personnel legally on the Syrian ground?
Whose security is threatened by republishing locations of the secret U.S. military bases in Syria? Yours, U.S. military personnel or the people and the army of Syria?

John Mason
John Mason
July 20, 2017

Was never a well kept secret, Syria, Russia and Iran would have been well aware of these bases. Love the mud slinging though.

Jane Karlsson
Jane Karlsson
July 20, 2017

Perhaps the US and Turkey are secretly collaborating to get everything out into the open so the US can get out and stop wasting taxpayers’ money on a failed project. Wouldn’t it be nice if Trump can arrange for the whole fiasco to be blamed on Obama and Hillary.

Linda Wren
Linda Wren
Reply to  Jane Karlsson
July 21, 2017

You wish & millions of others

July 21, 2017

This is part of the US “boil the frog” strategy. The US intends to incrementally increase its troops, armored vehicles (new reports of large amounts being trucked in surfaced today) and artillery, and build numerous bases in the areas of Syria under its control. This will be done under the guise of fighting ISIS in Raqqa. Once ISIS has been reduced, the US will use these bases to turn on the Syrian military with assistance from US and NATO assets in the region and bomb the Syrian military into the Stone Age, just like the Libya operation. The US may… Read more »

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